World Food Programme Ambassador Against Hunger, Howard G Buffett, watches from a helicopter in final preparation to fly over the Langtang Valley, Ganesh Himal Range, in Northwest Nepal. This is the first of five-day journey in which he will gather photos and stories of those assisted by WFP in Nepal. As part of his advocacy work, Buffett is preparing a book on the human condition.
Arrival at Gatlang, a village in Langtang Valley in which WFP runs a project in cooperation with the TMI (Mountains Institute) for the cultivation of medicinal and aromatic plants to increase income and address food insecurity. Hard-to-reach mountain communities in western Nepal are some of the poorest in the country.
Buffett receives the local beverage offered by the community on arriving by helicopter. In this shot, you see him with WFP staffers and local assistants wearing the white scarves of welcome presented to visitors.
Despite the beauty of Nepal’s rugged terrain, the melting of glaciers means further difficulty for the many already-impoverished people of the country, beneficiaries of WFP’s work
On arrival at Lokhim, residents traditionally greet visitors with leis of marigolds, their rich colour reflective of the warmth and generosity of the reception.
In the village of Lokhim, WFP provides take-home rations to pregnant and lactating women, as well as for their young children.
During a two-year programme, close to 3,000 women and young children will receive fortified food, healthcare training and nutrition instruction in Solukhumba, part of WFP’s Mother and Child Health (MCH) initiative in Nepal. The goal is to reduce the high incidence of underweight and malnourished children and to prevent anemia.
Buffett, in preparing each leg of his helicopter journeys, chooses his windows carefully, studying maps ahead to chart his best opportunities for photos.
Buffett visits the Sanichare refugee camp sites, observing food distribution and self-reliance programmes. WFP today assists 108,000 Buthanese refugees who have been in Nepalese camps for more than 10 years.
The last stop of Buffett’s visit to Nepal is a site affected by floods. In August 2008, after heavy rains, the River Koshi broke through its banks in the southeastern part of the country. More than 70,000 people were displaced. Most now live in precarious conditions in temporary camps and are dependent on WFP food assistance.